Bat Mitzvah: A Jewish Girl's Coming of Age

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For the first time, a comprehensive--and celebratory--look at one of Judaism's most contemporary traditions. Noted author and storyteller Barbara Diamond Goldin gives readers real-life stories of girls and women in their own voices. From the forgotten women of history to the first women rabbis of our time, the stories will lead readers to reexamine and rediscover the role of women in Judaism.

A history and description of the bat mitzvah, the ceremony in which a ...

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Overview

For the first time, a comprehensive--and celebratory--look at one of Judaism's most contemporary traditions. Noted author and storyteller Barbara Diamond Goldin gives readers real-life stories of girls and women in their own voices. From the forgotten women of history to the first women rabbis of our time, the stories will lead readers to reexamine and rediscover the role of women in Judaism.

A history and description of the bat mitzvah, the ceremony in which a Jewish girl marks her transition to adulthood.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
In the same format as Eric Kimmel's Bar Mitzvah, Bat Mitzvah: A Jewish Girl's Coming of Age by Barbara Diamond Goldin, illus. by Erika Weihs, provides far more than an explanation of a ceremony. About half the book is devoted to a thoughtful overview of Jewish women's history, starting with biblical times; the remainder discusses the bat mitzvah, exploring the elements of the ceremony, its evolution since it was first performed in 1922, and its impact on a variety of women (Viking, $14.99, 160p, ages 10-13 ISBN 0-670-86034-4, Oct.).
Children's Literature - Judy Chernak
An excellent historical synopsis of the status of Jewish women (age twelve and up) thorough the ages, this book also explains the history of the bat mitzvah ceremony from its beginnings in 19th century Europe to the first American ceremony in 1922 and the evolution of modern customs. Differences as well as similarities to the boy's bar mitzvah (at age thirteen) are covered in the first half of the book. The balance deals with the ideal: study and spiritual preparation for this transition rather than concentration on its material aspects. The author asks the young woman to give deep thought to what kind of Jewish woman, now responsible for carrying out the commandments, she intends to be and what meaningful contribution she will make to the lives of others. With glossary, bibliography, index and joyous woodcut illustrations, this easy-to-read reference is the perfect birthday gift for the eleven or twelve-year-old and should become required (and joyful) reading for the girls and their parents.
School Library Journal
Gr 5-8-The book to read on the subject. Many of today's Jewish girls are unaware that their right to have a bat-mitzvah ceremony is of comparatively recent origin. In Part I, Goldin relates this bit of lore as well as stories of women in Jewish history from the biblical period to the 1700s. Part II consists of explanations of the preparation, the ceremony, the celebrations (some quite unique), and the aftermath. This is also a book of religious introspection, philosophy, psychology, and sociology regarding the meaning and accomplishment of bat mitzvah. Attractive black-and-white scratchboard drawings depicting various appropriate scenes adorn the text. With today's multiple expressions of being Jewish, intermingled families, divorces, and wide social circles, the book should have broad appeal, as it touches on each situation. Anecdotes from 25 girls and their families make this title, along with Eric Kimmel's Bar Mitzvah (Viking, 1995), an insightful addition to all collections.-Marcia W. Posner, Holocaust Memorial and Educational Center of Nassau County, Glen Cove, NY
Ellen Mandel
The first North American bat mitzvah, the celebration of a Jewish girl's coming-of-age at 12 or 13, was held in 1922. Although the ceremony is a relatively recent development, the strong, responsive, and responsible role of Jewish women is as old as history. Goldin cameos courageous females from biblical to modern times who wielded behind-the-scenes power to affect the fate of the Jewish people. She describes how women's roles in many congregations are still evolving as are the ways in which a young woman fulfills her responsibilities as a bat mitzvah. The variety of ways some girls have chosen to celebrate their bat mitzvah are sampled as are several young women's reflections on the highlights of their preparation and ceremony. Explaining the ancient Jewish rituals and describing traditional synagogue furnishings, Goldin also briefs readers on the etiquette of attending the service. This relevant, informative, and highly readable companion to Kimmel's "Bar Mitzvah: A Jewish Boy's Coming of Age" will enrich school and public library collections.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780670860340
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 10/28/1995
  • Pages: 160
  • Age range: 10 - 13 Years
  • Product dimensions: 6.21 (w) x 9.26 (h) x 0.73 (d)

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